Pittsburgh Steelers Free Agency: Potential Signings, Rumors and Storylines

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Pittsburgh Steelers Free Agency: Potential Signings, Rumors and Storylines
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Pittsburgh Steelers fans, like all others enamored by the circus of NFL free agency, will be watching closely in the coming weeks and months to get a better idea of how the 2012 roster will look.

With a postseason that ended more black than gold in January, autumn's Terrible Towel wavers will become spring's talent "cravers," hoping that franchise management makes the proper personnel decisions to reload a core that has championship potential.

Personally, I had once always viewed the NFL draft as an ideal opportunity to find great long-term talent that can be homegrown and developed into the team's mold for excellence.  It's obvious that a franchise's best interest is to draft with long-term hopes.

Conversely, free agency can be a great means to fill temporary holes, the patchwork that alleviates weaknesses of a roster.  Still, picking up a solid free agent does not necessarily equate to a mere pit stop.

Names like James Farrior and Jerome Bettis prove that the acquisition of players from other teams, including via free agency, is hardly a mere search for "Band-Aids," often offering teams iconic legends that fit their way of playing the game more than that of their previous team.

So, what moves will the Steelers look to make or, moreover, should they look to make?  And what other influences beyond team needs will impact these decisions?

Cap room is the most obvious consideration.  Of the players listed here, right or wrong, only a few (at best) will be acquired.  The team's ability to re-sign Mike Wallace and, consequently, the resulting arrangement of his potential new deal, will have a profound impact on the degree of which the team dives into the free-agency pool.

Also, the team's plans for the NFL draft will also impact their free-agent signing strategy.

Without having a surefire crystal ball to iron out all of the miscellaneous factors, this is a look at some of the team needs that have been discussed this offseason, along with the potential free agents that are slated to be available to fill those needs. 

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